Our museum feature this month is a charming square salad plate in the Quilt pattern (number 4515) by Royal Winton. This colorful square plate showcases a variety of different overlapping quilt-themed designs. Quilt was produced in the late 1930s, around the same time as Tartans, a similar Royal Winton pattern (number 4514). Although the Quilt pattern isn’t a traditional chintz design, its creator, Royal Winton, has become inexorably linked with chintz dinnerware.
The story of Royal Winton begins when Leonard Grimwade and his brother Sydney began a small pottery trade in Stoke-on-Trent in 1885. Two inventions of Leonard Grimwade's, duplex lithographic transferring, and the Climax kiln, would forever change how chintz was produced, and also had a significant impact on the dinnerware industry as a whole. Duplex lithographs were designs printed on thin tissues, with detachable backs. Pattern prints were applied to the paper, and then transferred to the ceramic piece by removing the detachable backing. This new process allowed chintz patterns to be produced quickly and efficiently.
To complement the pattern application process, Leonard created the Climax kiln. Unlike traditional kilns that had to be loaded, heated, cooled, then unloaded, the Climax Kiln operated continuously, and ceramics were moved in and out with carts on wheels. Ceramics, and in particular chintz patterns, could now be mass-produced. Royal Winton’s first chintz design, Marguerite, was an immediate success upon its introduction in 1928. The company followed this success with another chintz pattern, Delphinium, three years later. Over the next 30 years, Royal Winton would release more than 50 chintz designs, including popular patterns like Summertime, Old Cottage Chintz, Welbeck, Sweet Pea, and Cheadle. Royal Winton patterns remain highly collectible.
The Royal Winton Quilt salad plate in our museum is not for sale, but we do have Quilt items available for purchase in our inventory; be sure to browse our web site. And remember that we always invite you to visit our facilities – here you’ll see a stunning variety of silver, china, crystal, and collectibles. Our 500,000-square-foot facilities hold more than 12 million individual pieces in more than 400,000 patterns. Our showroom and museum are open from 9:00 am to 7:00 pm ET, 7 days (except holidays); free tours are available from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm ET, 7 days. The showroom and museum are conveniently located between Greensboro and Burlington, NC, at exit 132 off Interstate 85/40. We look forward to seeing you.